The Weyburn Oilwomen are looking ahead to graduation and an initiative that helps graduates properly celebrate their big day.
“Last year, one of our board members kind of came up with the idea,” said Oilwomen Board Member Abby Kradovill. “She saw this initiative in another community, maybe a different variation of it, but just thought that grad super expensive and we didn't want anyone not to attend their grad or celebrate grad because they didn't have the funds to do so and so we came up with a with an idea of how we could put in our own funds to, say, cover grad outfits and not just for females. Normally we're female-oriented, most of our initiatives kind of are just surrounding female empowerment. But this we really wanted to do for both. So we do.”
Kradovill noted that the idea took on a life of its own when they reached out to other community groups.
“Then, of course, in Weyburn everything snowballs and you kind of like, reach out to all the community members. It just became, you know, so much bigger than we initially had thought.”
Once the community got involved, they were able to go beyond just the grad clothes and create a whole experience, including jewelry from Hillberg and Berk, cupcakes from The Domesticated Caker, hair, makeup, and photography.
Last year, they were able to help out four graduates.
“That was pretty amazing and it was a really positive thing in our community. Seeing those people in the grocery store that were like, hey, I was a mom of one of these grads that you helped breaking down in tears like, thank you so much. It was like just such a good, heart-wrenching feeling that you're like, OK, this is something that actually made an impact.”
Kradovill noted that the goal this year is to once again help four graduates, who have already been chosen and notified.
“Everything is private,” she added. “So we don't post who actually wins or any of that. But we will send them a letter detailing it and then it's in their hands.”
She noted that this is an initiative they plan on continuing.
“It’s about inspiring that desire to give back and showing that the community does have everyone’s back.”